WELCOME to the web site of Phil Armitage at Stony Brook University. I'm interested in using
numerical simulations to understand
the physics of protoplanetary disks, the formation of extrasolar planets, and the astrophysics of black
holes. Ongoing work studies the formation of planetesimals, the accretion of planetary envelopes, and the
role of strong magnetic fields in black hole accretion. I currently divide my time between Stony Brook and
the Center for Computational Astrophysics at the Flatiron Institute, where I am developing a group in planet
formation. If you're interested in visiting or working with us, let me know!
: The formation of planetesimals
In work led by Jake Simon
are using simulations of aerodynamically coupled mixtures of gas and particles to understand
how the first planetesimals - km or larger bodies that can be thought of as primordial
asteroids - formed. We have found evidence that the complex process of gravitational
collapse nonetheless yields an initial mass function that may be
, in the
sense of being independent of the size of the solid particles that are involved.
: Tidal disruption by binary black holes
With Eric Coughlin
investigated the process of stellar tidal disruption in the case where the galactic
nucleus harbors a binary of supermassive black holes. The
out to be particularly rich, and may offer a new way to find black hole binaries
that are approaching the regime of gravitational wave-driven inspiral.
I did undergraduate and graduate work at the University of Cambridge,
working with Cathie Clarke at the Institute of Astronomy. I came to
New York via postdoctoral stints at CITA and MPA and many enjoyable and productive years
as a faculty member in Colorado.
Beyond work I enjoy running and
hiking, the latter often combined with
photography. My main focus is
landscapes, but I've occasionally ventured into wildlife photographing
bears in Alaska.
Philip Armitage, Department of Physics and Astronomy
Stony Brook University, NY 11794-3800